3 April 2007
Transport 2000  today welcomed the news that Network Rail’s efficiencies mean they can spend £2.4 billion on improvements to tracks and stations over the next two years . The investment will improve conditions for the poor, squashed commuters Sardine Man has been meeting over the past two weeks .
Although this is not new money, it is encouraging to see that Network Rail’s maintenance being taken in house has resulted in savings which can benefit passengers. For the first time in decades there will be new platforms built, platform extensions, station and track upgrades – all of the things that Transport 2000 has been calling for in its Growing the Railways campaign.
Julia Thomas, Public Transport Campaigner at Transport 2000, said: "Transport 2000 is delighted with this news, particularly as it is exactly what we have been calling for since 2005 in our Growing the Railways campaign. However, this isn’t new Government money – it’s thanks to Network Rail being more efficient. We now urgently want to see the Government doing more to expand our railways."
Notes to Editors
 Transport 2000 is an independent campaigning and research body that represents the key transport interests of around 40 environmental groups, transport organisations and transport unions. We bring together people who seek to reduce the environmental and social effects of transport through encouraging less use of cars, lorries and planes and more use of rail, buses, trams, cycling and walking.
 Sardine Man is currently travelling around the country, meeting commuters on some of the most overcrowded rail journeys in England and Wales. Sardine Man is part of Transport 2000's Growing the Railways campaign, which is calling on the Government to:
- Ensure all future rail franchises are more flexible and longer, enabling operators to improve timetables, work together to resolve overcrowding and invest in infrastructure
- Immediately stop the policy of allowing passengers to be priced off the railway during peak times and instead work with businesses to promote more flexible working hours
- Set maximum levels of overcrowding for the whole country, not just the South East and London
- Set up systems for monitoring levels of overcrowding, including requiring train operators to provide overcrowding data on a regular basis
- Reduce the amount of standing time considered 'acceptable' from 20 minutes (currently only in London and the South East) to a much more reasonable 15 minutes (nationwide) in the first instance and enforce it